“Unregulated” art trade used in attempt to launder £6.7 million of ill-gotten gains

A ring of five alleged securities fraudsters and a London art dealer as well as four businesses are named in an indictment filed by the US Attorney’s Department of Justice in New York.

The charges against the defendants include conspiracy to commit securities fraud and money laundering conspiracy.

Matthew Green, who set up Mayfair Fine Art in January 2017, is named alongside Panayiotis Kyriacou, Arvinsingh Canaye, Adrian Baron, Linda Bullock, Aristos Aristodemou, Beaufort Securities Ltd, Beaufort Management Services, Loyal Bank, Loyal Agency and Trust Corp.

Illicit art deal

Green allegedly help arrange the attempted sale of a Pablo Picasso painting that was thwarted by an undercover FBI agent who feigned an interest in participating in the transaction.

Prosecutors allege that between October 2017 and February 2018 Aristodemou, Green and their co-conspirators agreed to launder £6.7 million (US$9.3 million) via the sale of a Picasso painting.

Unregulated trade

Aristodemou is reported to have described the art business as the “only market that is unregulated”.

According to prosecution, the defendants proposed the FBI’s undercover agent could purchase from Green, Personnages, a 1965 painting by Picasso. The sale was halted before the painting could change hands.

Categories: Trade Based Financial crimes News

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